Guidance and control
for bunker-busting munitions
The trick for effective bunker-busting bombs is to enable the
munition to penetrate deeply
through dirt, concrete, rock, and
into the target structure before
exploding; without precise timing
the bombs can’t do their jobs.
As explosive ordnance and the means to deliver it against enemy fortifications have evolved through the centuries, government and military leaders throughout history have sought
increasingly strong facilities in which to establish secure
command and control.
Larger and more powerful explosions eventually drove
commanders into underground bunkers, creating an endless
cycle of deeper and deeper bunkers versus bigger and more
powerful “bunker busters” (B/Bs) able to penetrate more layers of dirt and stone, with the more recent addition of reinforced metals and concrete used in new “hard and deeply
buried targets” (HDBTs).
A cheaper defense, used extensively by those who could
not counter superior anti-bunker munitions, has been to
build such underground centers beneath schools, hospitals,
religious centers, or other civilian structures modern nations
have become increasingly loath to endanger. Even the most
precision weaponry can do little to overcome a human shield
Perhaps the best known bunkers of the last century were
crucial to one of the most epic conflicts in history. British
Prime Minister Winston Churchill directed first the defense
of England and then its counter-attacks from the Cabinet
A B-52 strategic bomber releases a test version of the Massive
Ordnance Penetrator (MOP) during a test of the weapon over
White Sands Missile Range, N.M. The Massive Ordnance
Penetrator (MOP) bunker-busting bomb is shown here in the
bomb bay of a B- 2 stealth bomber.